We sent strong teams to Shelbourne and Cork where the opening rounds of some high quality stakes got underway on Saturday.
At Shelbourne, the highlight of the card was the Boylesports Champion Stakes Semi Finals where we had three representatives; Clonbrien Hero, Ballydoyle Flash and Clonbrien Prince. The opening Semi saw Clonbrien Hero qualify in second spot behind Ballybough Dad after a messy opening turn where the winner’s early pace saw him avoid the trouble. Hero managed to overcome the bunching at the opening turn to power along the far side to secure his qualifying spot. Clonbrien Prince will also line up in next week’s final when he ran out runner up to last year’s winner, Jaytee Yankee in the second Semi Final. Ballydoyle Flash will ensure we are triple handed in the Final as he finished runner up to Frisky Luck with a battling performance in the third Semi Final.
The Final draw is as follows : 1. Clonbrien Hero. 2. Clonbrien Prince. 3. Ballydoyle Flash. 4. Jaytee Yankee. 5. Frisky Luck. 6. Ballybough Dad..
On the under card, Rural Aloha ran out an impressive winner of the Specsavers 525 A0 contest, leading on the run and into the opening turn, she was not for stopping, eventually coming home three lengths in front in a brilliant 28.33.
Down at Cork it was the the opening round of the Greyhound & Petworld A1 Stake where Nitro Notorious, Ballycowen Jake, and Sippery Robin looked to progress. Nitro Notrious ran a good race to take the opening heat, with kennel mate Ballycowen Jake back in third spot, both runners secured their qualifying spots and move into the Second Round. There was no luck for Slippery Robin as he finished fourth in Heat 3. Beaming Paradise was also luckless as he contested the Boylesports Irish Greyhound Derby Trial Stake, he eventually went down by under two lengths in third place after crowding at the first bend.